Former Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has weighed in on the feud between Donald Trump and LeBron James, telling the president he should 'love all'.
The former hardline leader is one of many high-profile figures including first lady Melania Trump who have condemned the president's Twitter attack on James after he was criticized by the NBA star in a CNN interview Friday.
On Sunday Ahmadinejad posted about the spat on Twitter - which is banned in Iran - writing: 'Mr. @realDonaldTrump In my opinion everyone especially a President should love all, and not differentiate between them.
'I love @KingJames #MichaelJordan @RaufMahmoud and all athletes, and wish them all the best.'
Ahmadinejad has directed several tweets at Trump in the past, although this weekend's comment was rare in that it had nothing to do with Iran.
Along with James and Jordan, Ahmadinejad's tweet mention Denver Nuggets player Mahmoud Abdul-Rauf, a player who has been outspoken about his Muslim faith.
The origin of the controversy was a bizarre tweet from Trump that labeled CNN's Dom Lemon the 'dumbest man on television' after his interview with James.
'Lebron James was just interviewed by the dumbest man on television, Don Lemon. He made Lebron look smart, which isn't easy to do. I like Mike!' Trump posted on Friday evening, appearing to reference Michael Jordan.
The Commander-in-chief was referring to an interview in which the NBA legend opened up to Lemon about how he felt Trump had used sport to exacerbate US racial tensions.
On Saturday, Jordan weighed in, telling NBC through a spokesman: 'I support LJ. He's doing an amazing job for his community'.
The first lady also broke from her husband, with her spokesperson saying: 'It looks like LeBron James is working to do good things on behalf of our next generation and just as she always has, the First Lady encourages everyone to have an open dialogue about issues facing children today.'
Trump himself hasn't responded to any of the backlash against his tweet.
This article has been adapted from its original source.
© Associated Newspapers Ltd.